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MN Shutterbug

A real challenge!

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Went to the park yesterday and there wasn't much to shoot. I did run across a couple pheasant roosters ready to do battle. Unfortunately, they separated when they saw my car. That would sure make a fine shot of a couple locked in battle in midair. I've seen it, but not been quick enough to capture it. Maybe someday. whistle Anyway, I walked a park trail to find a couple bluebird nest boxes. All I saw were tree swallows. They didn't like me in the area and kept flying around me, flying straight away and then coming back at me. I never before realized what fast and erratic fliers these little guys are. I stood my ground for about 15 minutes, attempting to get a shot of a swallow in flight. I could only shoot when they were coming from one direction because of the low sun. I ended up with quite a few pictures of just sky and many of a big blur. This is the best I came away with. It's far from good, but it sure was good practice. It may have turned a bit better if I would have opened up to f6.3, to allow me a little faster shutter speed. But, just keeping the focus locked on them, is the real challenge. If a person knew the flight the swallow would take, he'd be better off using manual focus. In this case, they were up and down and around and around, so I was forced to use AF. I really worked up a sweat. So, if any of you get bored and are up for a real challenge, I invite you to give this a shot. It's a humbling experience.

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